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Biden admin lost track of possibly 237,000 illegal immigrants in US last year: Report

Migrants wearing "Biden, please let us in," t-shirts at "El Chaparral" US border crossing on March 2, 2021. (Photo by Stringer/picture alliance via Getty Images)
July 21, 2022

President Joe Biden’s U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) doesn’t know where possibly hundreds of thousands of illegal immigrants are in the United States after the agency failed to record the U.S. addresses of nearly one-third of illegal border crossers last year, an internal Department of Homeland Security report obtained by the Washington Free Beacon revealed on Wednesday.

According to the report — written by the DHS office of inspector general — the CBP did not record the U.S. addresses of roughly 237,000 illegal immigrants between March and June 2021. Many of the illegal immigrants that the Biden administration lost track of did not appear at their mandatory Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) appointment.

The report revealed that border agents were so overwhelmed by the massive influx of illegal immigrants at the U.S.-Mexico border last year that they started using “ad hoc methods” to record illegal immigrants’ whereabouts, including writing the details on whiteboards.

“DHS’s IT systems did not effectively allow CBP and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement personnel to track migrants from apprehension to release or transfer,” the report states, according to the Beacon. “These deficiencies can delay DHS from uniting children with families and sponsors and cause migrants to remain in DHS custody beyond legal time limits.”

During the Biden administration’s first year, ICE deported just 58,000 illegal immigrants, the lowest number of ICE deportations in years.

The border crisis has gotten worse in the Biden administration’s second year – as of June, more than 1.74 million illegal immigrants have already been apprehended at the southwest border. The number of apprehensions has already topped last year’s all-time record despite three months remaining in this fiscal year, new U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) data released Friday showed.

American cities beyond the border are starting to feel the pain of Biden’s lax border policies. The mayors of Washington, D.C. and New York City admitted this week that their cities are overwhelmed with illegal immigrants and called on the Biden administration to provide federal assistance.

According to a Department of Homeland Security memo also obtained by the Beacon, the Biden administration stopped prosecuting most illegal border crossings in 2021 – just 2,896 illegal immigrants who were arrested at the U.S.-Mexico border were assigned to U.S. Marshals Service for federal prosecution last year.

“The lack of accountability from this administration encourages the worst people flooding our borders, criminals, to keep violating our laws until they finally commit a crime so egregious that the Department of Justice is forced to prosecute,” a senior DHS official told the outlet.